Sharon Penman

Sharon Penman

I am an American of Irish-English-Welsh heritage, and I currently live in New Jersey, although many of my readers imagine I am happily dwelling upon a Welsh mountaintop--but no such luck. I was once a tax lawyer, which I looked upon as penance for my sins. Like most writers, I was born with a love of the written word, although I never expected to be able to support myself as a writer; when you read about starving artists in their garrets, most of them have starving writers as roommates. But I was very lucky and I have been blessed to make my living as a writer for the past thirty-seven years or so, and to find readers on both sides of the Atlantic. I have lived in Yorkshire and Wales to research two of my books--The Sunne in Splendour and Here be Dragons-- and am published in the U.K. as Sharon Penman, without the middle name, Kay, that I use in the United States. All of my novels--fourteen at last count--are set in the Middle Ages, and focus upon England's most colorful dynasty, the Plantagenets. It is almost as if they lived their dramatic and often wildly improbable lives with future historical novelists in mind, and I am very grateful to them--especially to the Angevins,Henry II and Eleanor of Aquitaine and their equally famous children, known to their contemporaries as the Devil's Brood. PS I added a few new photos recently but could find no way to add captions. So this is the best I can do. The swordsman showing me how to use a medieval sword is a friend and fellow writer, David Blixt, who is also a very talented actor; when this photo was taken, he'd just put on a remarkable demonstration of swordplay at the Historical Novel Society convention. And the photo of me on that bench was taken by my Australian friend, Paula Mildenhall, at a French winery on our Eleanor of Aquitaine Tour, which was one of the most memorable experiences of my life.
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